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The language of resilience is increasingly used by International organizations that seek to respond to contemporary social, economic, and environmental crises. This paper…
The language of resilience is increasingly used by International organizations that seek to respond to contemporary social, economic, and environmental crises. This paper focuses on the World Bank’s World Development Reports, and its uses of resilience. By deploying a quantitative critical discourse analysis, this paper shows how in the recent years resilience has gained traction within the Bank’s discourse. It further analyses the evolution of the genre, the style, and the ideational content of the Bank’s discourse related to resilience. Resilience is now depicted as something that can be built and not just observed. Furthermore, it is increasingly reified in these reports and ascribed to a whole gamut of entities. The ontological indistinction of resilience reinforces its fit with contemporary neoliberal governance.
This paper examines the recent process of transformation within the World Bank as a series of reactive mediations to the crisis-laden course of capitalist development on a…
This paper examines the recent process of transformation within the World Bank as a series of reactive mediations to the crisis-laden course of capitalist development on a global scale over the last two decades. Two aspects of the Bank’s attempt to construct a new development agenda as a response to contradictions emergent within neoliberal-style social restructuring are highlighted. First, it has embraced the theoretical trends and policy implications of institutional economics. Second, it has refashioned its relations with client countries and their civil societies under the rubrics of “ownership,” “participation” and “empowerment.” The paper proceeds to indicate why the Bank’s current reformulation of development theory presents itself within mainstream theoretical paradigms as an appropriate prescription to counter the crisis of neoliberal-style social restructuring. Concurrently, on the basis of a materialist critique of capitalist development, the paper proceeds to indicate the substantive limits to these present reforms by indicating their theoretical weaknesses and their practical contradictions.
In the field of comparative education there is a vast and growing amount of research on how education policy agendas are formed at the transnational level, and how these…
In the field of comparative education there is a vast and growing amount of research on how education policy agendas are formed at the transnational level, and how these may influence policymaking in individual countries. Particularly the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) play an important role in the dissemination of education policies. This article seeked to contribute to a more nuanced understanding of how the two organizations have formulated their policy advice concerning quality assurance and evaluation of school education toward the intended beneficiaries of such advice, either in standardized form or taking into account local contexts. The case countries were Brazil, China, and Russia (BCR), which in terms of their political power and economic resources differ from the typical World Bank client countries, but at the same time are not OECD members. Our data consisted of World Bank and OECD publications from the three BCR countries published during two decades from the mid-1990s onward. The document analysis was complemented by some factual information gained through interviews of relevant actors. In the analyzed material prescriptions given in the tone of “international best practice” were predominant. This position saw the quality of education as a concept that has a globally applicable definition. In addition, the advice directed at Russia and China has in an ambivalent manner acknowledged the sociocultural context of the concept of quality in the national pedagogical tradition.
This chapter examines World Bank publications, including publicized reports and widely disseminated policy statements like the World Development Reports, as well as the…
This chapter examines World Bank publications, including publicized reports and widely disseminated policy statements like the World Development Reports, as well as the plans and appraisals of two specific operations in Indonesia. Based on this examination, the author suggests that characterizations which emphasize the Bank's intransigence or celebrate its responsiveness fail to provide a satisfactory description of country-level education policy evolution. The chapter begins with two of the major theoretical frameworks that have been used to study the Bank's work in education. This is followed by a summary of the evolution of the Bank's involvement in education at the international level. The third part of this chapter analyzes two educational reforms that the World Bank has promoted in Indonesia in the last 10 years – programs advancing vocational education and decentralization – and examines how these priorities have been affected by local context and demands and shifts in the global discourse on education. The author concludes that the World Bank's role in the diffusion of education reform is best understood from a world culture perspective but that its interests – and the interests of its primary shareholders – are advanced in particularly opportune moments like democratic transitions.
This chapter focuses on the international development plans implemented in Colombia during the regime of Gustavo Rojas Pinilla (1953–1957). It argues that foreign…
This chapter focuses on the international development plans implemented in Colombia during the regime of Gustavo Rojas Pinilla (1953–1957). It argues that foreign economists and international agencies, such as the World Bank, played a significant role in supporting and strengthening local leaders opposing the regime. By analyzing the creation of the Cauca Valley Corporation in 1955, through the intervention of the former chair of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) David Lilienthal, this study provides two main contributions to the literature on economists and political economy under authoritarian rule. Firstly, it illuminates how local groups mobilized international economists to contrast Rojas. Secondly, it analyses the evolving relationship between World Bank advisors, David Lilienthal, and the regime. After describing the consolidation of political and economic interest groups and their global connections before Rojas coup d’état, it focuses on Rojas’ regime and on how it affected the implementation of the World Bank development started with the General Survey Mission in 1949. In the Cauca Department, local leaders invoked the World Bank and Lilienthal to implement a TVA model in opposition with the central government.
Globalization has become such an all-encompassing concept that it is almost meaningless. However, most scholars recognize that the term conveys in some manner or form a…
Globalization has become such an all-encompassing concept that it is almost meaningless. However, most scholars recognize that the term conveys in some manner or form a shrinkage of time and space such that events happening in one part of the world have the potential to impact other locales (Giddens, 1999; Held, 1991). Beyond this most basic meaning, it is hard to find any agreement on what the term actually conveys or when in fact the world actually entered a global age (Morrow & Torres, 2000). Given the vagueness of globalization as a concept, the challenge then is to be as clear as possible in discussing various forces related to globalization that may impact a particular phenomenon under study. In the case of this chapter, the phenomenon of interest is university transformation in the developing world.
Most of the literature on the World Bank struggles to understand precisely how effective are the Bank’s projects and policies, emphasizing at the same time as reaffirming certain universal parameters with which to measure the good and the bad. This article, by contrast, argues for a different way of seeing the World Bank, that is, for scholarship that interrogates the political rationalities which underlie these distinctions and categories and which make these parameters and measures viable, necessary, and enduring. Indeed, most writings – including the innumerable self‐evaluations carried out by the Bank – simultaneously note the enormity of the Bank’s past misdeeds as well as its unique position as the only global institution up to the monumental task of translating global truths into global plans of action. Because of its unique role as the global development expert, the Bank is always two steps ahead of the pack, always re‐assessing and re‐tooling for improvement in ways that most national and international institutions cannot. Who else can respond so quickly to catastrophes around the globe – appearing one month in Thailand, the next in Argentina, and, in a bomb’s flash, in Afghanistan and Iraq? In a world in which global crises routinely erupt and “require” global experts of development to resolve them, the Bank and its affiliates in the World Bank Group have no rivals. But, rather than ask why the Bank’s responses are ultimately insufficient or flawed, we must first ask how problems get defined in terms of global crises and their solutions in terms of global development institutions in the first place? How did these ideas and institutions become so influential? What power dynamics do they embody?
In 2011, the World Bank announced its intention to conduct a holistic review and reform of its procurement framework. This reform was intended to ensure that its…
In 2011, the World Bank announced its intention to conduct a holistic review and reform of its procurement framework. This reform was intended to ensure that its procurement system, which is the means through which the Bank disburses developmental loans and grants is in line with modern trends in procurement, is flexible enough to respond to unforeseen challenges and is coherent. This paper examines both how Bank procurement has evolved since the first formal regulations were issued in 1964 and the implications of the recent reforms for the Bank and its borrowers. Readers will see that ongoing reforms evidence a significant change for the Bank's approach to procurement and its relationship with its borrowers and will dramatically affect the way the Bank-funded procurements are conducted.
I. Introduction For over forty years, a model for Third World development has gained widespread acceptance. Three key premises underpin the traditional development model: (1) the identification of “development” with the maximization of the rate of national economic growth; (2) the quest to achieve Western living standards and levels of industrialization which require the transfer of labor from the agricultural to the industrial sector as well as increased consumerism; and (3) the integration into the interdependence of Third World nations in the global economy and the global marketplace. Increasing the demand for a Third World nation's exports (in other words, export‐led growth) is viewed as leading to the maximization of a nation's Gross National Product (GNP).